Adams Golf expands Redline RPM line to fairway woods
Adams Golf just announced the expansion of its successful Redline RPM line into fairway woods. The new low-profile woods will come in three different non-adjustable weighting schemes: draw bias (tungsten weight on the sole at heel), high-flight (weight at the back of the sole), and Tour flight (weight in center of sole for lower, more boring flight with less spin).
Although I haven’t hit them yet, this line looks pretty solid, if the Redline 460 driver is any measure of their quality.
This said, in my opinion, the fairway wood is the least useful, most over-rated club in the average golfer’s bag. Think about it:
–If you play every hole to par, you hit driver about 14 times per round.
–You hit an iron 18-22 times per round.
–You putt 36 times per round.
–The only time you MIGHT hit a fairway wood is on a long par 5 (1-4 times a round, maybe). But even then, most average golfers would be better off hitting two irons (or hybrids, which are quite different from traditional fairway woods, despite recent conflation of the two by some manufacturers and publications).
So what’s the point of carrying a fairway wood? Here are the standard reasons:
–You’re a low-handicap, long-hitter who has to tee off on short par 4s with it. Fair enough. I’m talking about the average golfer here, who on short par 4s could just as well use an iron/hybrid to have even a better chance of keeping the ball in play.
–You pop up your driver on a par 5 and need to make up some distance. Again, think about it. You’ve flubbed a 200-yard drive on a 500+ yard par 5. Hit two 7-irons onto the green (or close to it, and chip) and have a birdie/par opportunity. Instead, what most average golfers do is try to be a hero and end up blasting a fairway wood OB or topping it 150 yards, anyway—fairway woods are the easiest club in the bag to top, and we all know it. (If the hole is too long for you to do this, you’re playing from the wrong tees!)
–You flare or flub a drive on a long par 4. Take your medicine, get on the green in three and try to one-putt.
–You’re in the rough well away from the green. Again, an iron/hybrid is easier to hit here. How many fools have you seen trying to get solid wood on a ball in the hay? How many times does it actually work? The guys who always try this are the same ones who buy lottery tickets every week.
As you might suspect, I only carry one fairway wood—a 4/5 wood which I hit 230-240. I need a 3-wood like I need a hole in the head. Trying to tee up one of these low-profile fairway woods at the right height is nearly impossible for me, but if I do succeed in that, I hit a 3-wood almost as far as my driver (and just as wildly at times). And if I’m farther than 240 from the green, I have no business going for it.
Instead of the common second fairway wood, I carry an extra wedge (that makes 4: 48(P), 52(G), 56(S), and 60(L)). And I spend gobs of time practicing how to use them all. God knows, us average golfers do not always play holes in par, but scrambling around the green saves a ton more strokes than the occasional lucky/heroic fairway wood shot.
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Interesting advice for fairway woods, but I'd hesitate to use it with irons, as I would think clubs with sharper leading edges would dig. Gene Sarazan, I believe (or Sam Snead, perhaps), once suggested aiming every downswing at the FRONT of the ball. His logic was this: It's more likely to hit a thin shot that turns out OK than a fat one. If you aim at the front of the ball, and you happen to hit it fat, it'll be perfect. If you hit it thin, it might still turn out OK. (Or you'll whiff...)
BTW: In the past you've commented on the pronunciation of my name. In German, it is indeed pronounced like (and means) the part of a ship. In English, I go by "Kyle." A whacky spelling, I know. Blame my parents.
This is the first time I have read one of you articles. I really wish you had an "Opinion"! Can't say I agree with you on the fairway wood thing. I have a 15+ handicap index, and yes, though I only use a 3 wood 3-5 times a round it is a very valuable club for me to carry. Maybe if someone is a 20 or higher and has a tough time hitting a fairway wood off the turf, then they might want to look at other options. All I really have to say is, if you can hit the thing then keep it. I love my Cobra SZ 3 wood.
It's amazing to me that you can play golf, let alone type and offer advice, with your head so firmly planted up your a**.
BTW, do you have stock in Adams Golf, or do you sell fairway woods?
I use a 7 wood constantly constantly for 180 yard shots and a 4 wood at 200 yards. A perfect drive goes 230 yards and my 5 iron 160. Frequent MO on par 4s is driver, 7 wood, chip & putt. Scores range from 77 to 83. Bag setup is 3 woods, 5 irons, 4 wedges and a putter - 13 clubs.
The one category you left out is the average golfer
Average golfers hit 200 yard drives and score 96. Extending your math, subtracting 54 strokes for putts, drives and whatever they use on par 3 tee shots means they take 42 'other' strokes. Since they usually reach 3 greens in regulation we can also subtract 15 pitches/chips, leaving 29 full "iron" shots over 14 holes (par 3s are now excluded).
On par 4s of 380 - 400 yards that leaves Mr. Average Golfer a 180 - 200 yard approach. He would be better off replacing anything below a 7 iron with hybrids or woods that are easy to get airborne... the inevitable mishits will advance the ball better and a well struck ball will land on or somewhat near the green. It also provides a more useful choice for tee shots on longer par 3s.
As a 9 handicap, I need woods to fill the gap between my 12* driver and 27* 5 iron... the average golfer even more so. It's also the easiest way to look at a bag setup... just subtract the gaps between your driver and longest reliable iron and fill it with one or more woods or hybrids you can consistantly hit nice shots with.
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